2023 is the year of the rabbit, and creative bunny themes have taken centre stage. Who else had rabbit-inspired yee sang or bunny-shaped pastries during the Chinese new year festival?
In this article, we extended 2023’s rabbit theme into the travel world with two places known for their fluffy, cuddly residents. Next is a small summary of the outlook for the year based on a report by Datuk Joey Yap, a well-known authority in Feng Shui and Chinese metaphysics. Finally, travel destinations for each animal in the Chinese zodiac are suggested based on his recommendations and advice.
We hope this light-hearted look at where to go based on your Chinese Zodiac 2023 is a source of inspiration for great holidays together with family and friends. May this year of the water rabbit bring peace, hope, prosperity, and an abundance of good luck to everyone!
The world’s top 2 rabbit-related sightseeing spots
A Rabbit Paradise in Japan
Japan has many rabbit-related travel destinations, such as the world-famous rabbit island, bunny cafes, and shrines with rabbit statues. Here, rabbits are associated with peace, safe childbirth, and the blessing of many children. So this is the place to go if you are looking for a hefty dose of bunny kawaii and if you want to increase your chances of having a baby.
Top on the list for those going down the rabbit burrow is Okunoshima, also known as Rabbit Paradise. Okunoshima is a tiny island off the coast of Hiroshima Prefecture, and its wild bunnies are Internet-famous. Lie down on the beach in Okunoshima, you may experience hundreds of adorable fluffy bunnies hopping over your body.
Although wild, these bunnies are familiar with tourists, so they always expect treats. Best to go prepared, which means getting ready to run when you run out of treats. But worry not – these hungry fluff balls are harmless. Be sure to be gentle and only feed rabbit food. Human food may make them sick, and there are no vets on the island.
Okunoshima has one hotel and a small camping ground, but this island is only a 15-minute ferry ride from the mainland so consider staying nearby and making a day trip to play with bunnies. You can rent a bicycle, go around the island, hike on different walking trails, and swim in the sea. Rabbits are nocturnal, meaning they are most active in the early mornings and late evenings. This is when you want your camera ready for the perfect bunny photo opportunity.
Okunoshima is part of Takehara, a city in the Hiroshima Prefecture. Does Hiroshima ring a bell? During World War II, the world’s first deployed atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, UNESCO World Heritage Site, serves as a memorial of this bombing and is worth visiting.
Foodies should not miss Hiroshima’s most well-known cuisine – a particular type of okonomiyaki. Okonomiyaki is a savoury pancake of meat and vegetables with layers of cabbage and yakisoba noodles. Hiroshima also has two distinct types of ramen: Onomichi Ramen, served in soy sauce-based soup, and Shirunashi Daandamen, a dry, spicy noodle drenched in chilli oil.
Let’s go back to the rabbit-theme travel in Japan. There is a Shinto shrine in the Okazaki district, Kyoto, with rabbit statues in all shapes and sizes. This is the Okazaki shrine, and it is popular with couples looking to conceive.
Okazaki shrine has numerous sculptures of bunnies in various shapes. Some rabbit statues are said to ensure a happy marriage, while other immortalised bunnies are baby-making lucky charms. There is also a black rabbit watching the moon that helps a mother during childbirth. For all these blessings, pat the bunnies or rub their bellies.
Japan is well known for its cat cafes, and there are rabbit cafes located across Tokyo. This is where you can take a break from the hustle and bustle of this busy capital and cuddle different breeds of rabbits.
Visitors are encouraged to play, pet, and feed the rabbits at Rabbit Café Mimi in Higashi-Ikebukuro, Tokyo. Besides rabbits, this café also has otters that enjoy company and cuddling. With so much cuteness, Rabbit Café Mimi is very popular, so make a reservation before you go and, as always, be gentle with the animals.
England, Home of Peter Rabbit
Did you grow up reading about Peter Rabbit and his family and friends? Perhaps, your children are reading Peter Rabbit stories now. If so, England’s beautiful Lake District is where these stories come to life.
Lake District was home to Beatrix Potter, the author, and her furry four-legged friends, Peter Rabbit and his companions. This is a large and inspiring English national park with adventures for all ages. If you are there with little ones, make a trip to the World of Beatrix Potter, which showcases Peter rabbit and his pals in 3D and features all the little details in their stories. Beatrix Potter fans should visit Hill Top, Beatrix Potter’s home for decades. This beautiful home is described as a time capsule of Beatrix Potter’s life and inspired many of her books.
In Lake District, you can meet real bunnies, alpacas, lemurs, huskies, and meerkats and get to know the Herdwick (a breed of domestic sheep found in Lake District). If your teens are eager to get active, let them go cycling, sailing, canoeing, hiking, kayaking, quad biking, paddleboarding, trying out motorsports, shooting etc. The list of activities is endless. On rainy days, visit the many museums, theatres and art galleries in the area.
There is plenty of accommodation around Lake District, and you can pick from exclusive hotels, B&Bs, cosy inns and fully-equipped campsites. So stay for a few days and enjoy all that this beautiful national park has to offer.
Where To Go Based On Your Chinese Zodiac 2023
2023 is the year of the water rabbit. Feng Shui guides this twelve months should be a quieter, gentler period after 2022’s year of the tiger. The outlook for this year is interesting: we may see changes come about in mild phases while results are slowly realised. The way to success is to do less and achieve more.
Maybank Research’s 2023 Feng Shui Guide to Prosperity adds that the rabbit zodiac is a peach blossom star; thus, this is a good year for singles looking for meaningful relationships or getting married. Datuk Joey Yap’s Thriver’s Guide 2023 says this year provides an opportunity to finetune one’s abilities, which will propel you to the next level.
Here are some suggested travel destinations in 2023 based on your Chinese zodiac.
The Thriver’s Guide 2023 recommends that new romantic relationships move slower. You may find brief romances fizzling out quickly. But even if these relationships are short, they can be sweet. Those born in the year of the rabbit should keep a close eye on what they eat and pay special attention to caring for teeth and bones.
Where to go: Bangkok is a great place to go with friends and potential romantic partners. This crowded city is full of things to do, see and eat. There is much more than shopping and massages in this bustling city (how about a vibrant local art and culture scene?). For those eating clean, fresh, tasty food is easy to find.
Dragons, listen up! It’s a good year for travelling, especially for business trips. Try to strike a balance between work and life regardless of how career-minded you are. The Thriver’s Guide 2023 advises you to slow down if you are in a new relationship but give your complete dedication if you are already in a committed relationship.
Where to go: Are you already in or getting ready for marriage, the ultimate life-long commitment? We suggest celebrating your love in Bali, one of the best honeymoon places in Asia. Another option is to take your loved one on an epic trip of a lifetime: a luxurious river cruise in Europe.
2023 is an excellent year for snakes to travel for careers and education. Snakes looking for love should get busy with dates. The more dates, the better your chances of finding that someone special.
Where to go: Thailand’s beautiful beaches are great places to meet people and date. Nothing beats getting to know someone on a sandy beach with the wind in your hair. The top ten islands in Thailand include Koh Lipe, Phuket, Koh Phi Phi and the Similan Islands.
There is plenty of love in the air for those born in the year of the horse in 2023. However, the guide says to keep a cool head if you face stress and gossip from those around you. Horses are also reminded to care for their hearts and stomach by watching their diet and exercising.
Where to go: Head for fresh country air, clear streams and breathtaking scenery in Norway and Iceland. These countries have exceptional beauty, and the food is always uber-fresh and tasty. So horses that are also foodies will be satisfied.
This is an excellent time for those born in the year of the goat to build wealth. However, slow and steady is the way to avoid high-risk, high-reward investments and business ventures. The Thriver’s Guide 2023 advises horses to stay ahead of health issues and to take a moment to breathe as they balance work and rest.
Where to go: Wellness retreats aim to support your health or rejuvenation goals if you suffer from work or personal stress. There are wellness retreats worldwide that offer everything from meditation classes, group exercise classes, sensory deprivation tanks, and massages. An excellent wellness retreat in the country is the Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat in Ipoh.
The Thriver’s Guide says that monkeys should receive much help and support this year. Monkeys are encouraged to draw up a monthly financial budget to avoid overspending and keep it cool if they enter a new relationship. Monkeys looking for love have a high chance of meeting someone by accident.
Where to go: We encourage you to look at flight booking hacks and other tips to help you get the most out of your travel budget. Also, consider great getaways near Malaysia. These destinations include Nusa Penida, Bali; Angkor Wat, Cambodia, and Singapore’s Sentosa Island.
Those born in the year of the rooster are advised to focus on themselves. Work may have you constantly travelling, so prepare to get moving. This year, roosters are also vulnerable to colds, so keep your immune system strong and healthy.
Where to go: Wellness travel may be just what you need. These slower-paced holidays allow you to detox from an unhealthy lifestyle. Top wellness destinations include Rishikesh, India; Bali, Indonesia and Wakayama, Japan.
Love is in the air for those born in the year of the dog. This is an excellent year to commit, so if you are ready, go for it! You risk developing health problems if you tend to overwork, so aim to maintain a healthy lifestyle with exercise and rest.
Where to go: Australia is the perfect place for an unforgettable holiday filled with great food, exciting activities, and plenty of places to sit back and take in Mother Nature’s beautiful creations. You can opt for exhilarating adventures, a family-friendly trip to Sydney and New South Wales, or a natural wonder-themed holiday that brings you closer to Australia’s mountains, forest, beaches, and people.
Good fortune is on the horizon for those born in the year of the pig. Be generous, as giving is the key to receiving in 2023. The guide also says there is a chance of meeting someone special, and friendships will flourish during the year.
Where to go: How about going on a trip with like-minded friends? This will guarantee a year of fun, laughter and happy memories. Top group travel destinations include Bhutan, Iceland, the USA, and Spain.
This is a fantastic year for rats. Those born in the year of the rat can be adventurous but manage their expenses, especially if they plan to travel. However, there is a possibility of a promotion at work for your investments to make generous returns and for business owners to generate handsome profits.
Where to go: Consider a trip to any luxurious Aman resorts in Southeast Asia. Each resort celebrates the local environment, customs and cultures, and this is where you can sit back and find the true meaning behind your travels.
Those born in the year of the ox are advised to avoid outdoor locations like the forest as you may fall sick or hurt yourself. In addition, the guide says oxen should spend wisely and take new romantic relationships slowly.
Where to go: There are countless fun things in KL and Selangor. We suggest excellent places that offer you a chance to learn a new skill in a safe environment and under the watchful eye of experienced teachers. Also consider an off-the-beaten trip to Melaka, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
It is a year for those born in the year of the tiger to travel. Just remember to stay safe and take extra care of your body this year. Tigers may face stomach issues or breathing problems, so keep an eye on your health. There is also a possibility of meeting someone with similar interests this year.
Where to go: Female tigers, are you thinking of making a solo sojourn this year? Here are the best travel destinations for female travellers and travel mistakes you should avoid making. Tigers, male and female, can also consider a trip to Iceland, a beautiful island recognised as the most peaceful county on earth for 13 consecutive years.
Enjoy your travels in the year of the rabbit!
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